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Human Learning and Memory Final
Terms in this set (16)
Two processes that cause forgetting are decay and displacement.
(a) Define each.
(b) Both processes are examples of _____ failure.
(a) Both decay and displacement cause information to be lost from memory. Decay occurs when information is not used over a period of time. Displacement occurs when the capacity of STM is reached; newly arriving information then takes the place of currently held information.
(b) Decay and displacement are examples of storage failure.
In the Atkinson-Shiffrin model, what two strategies can be used to get information from short-term memory to long-term memory?
One strategy is repetition. The more times you repeat information that is in STM, the more likely it is that a copy will be sent to LTM. The other strategy is elaboration. You retrieve related information from LTM, combine it with the new information in STM, then send the entire package, new + old, to LTM.
Before you can store information in short- or long-term memory, you must ____ it.
You must encode information before you can store it. Encoding means that you put the information into a form that the memory system can process.
How do researchers measure the capacity of short-term memory?
They use the memory span test. They present a short list of digits or letters and immediately afterwards test recall for the items in their original order. The longest list you can repeat is your memory span. This is about 7 units of information, plus or minus
The original version of the interference theory of forgetting explained forgetting in terms of a single factor: _____. Based on the results of Melton & Irwin's study, a second factor was added: _____.
The first factor was response competition: When something was forgotten, something else was recalled by mistake.
The second factor was extinction (originally called "unlearning"): Forgotten information was suppressed because on previous occasions when it was recalled, it was not reinforced by positive feedback.
In an experiment on retroactive interference (RI), the experimental group memorizes two lists and gets a test on list # _____.
Suppose the list contains15 words. The Experimental Group remembers 6 words and the Control Group remembers 11 from that list. How much RI occurred in the Experimental Group?
In an experiment on RI, the Experimental Group gets a test on List 1. The Control Group gets a test on the same list, the only one they memorize. If the Experimental Group does worse than the Control, it's because of retroactive interference from List
In the example, the amount of RI is 5 words.
In Peterson & Peterson's experiment on short-term memory, subjects quickly forgot a 3-letter nonsense syllable over a period of 18 seconds during which rehearsal was prevented. The Petersons said this forgetting was caused by _____.
Keppel & Underwood found that recall decreased as subjects were tested on more and more items, showing that previous items were retained and caused forgetting through _____.
The Peterson's claimed that forgetting was caused by decay, the simple passage of time, and not by interference from any other materials presented during the experiment.
Keppel & Underwood showed that proactive interference from previously presented items caused much of the forgetting. Recall was relatively high on subjects' very first item and decreased as more and more items were given.
How is the Peterson & Peterson procedure used to study "release from proactive interference"? In your answer, describe how the procedure differs for the Experimental and Control groups and the kind of evidence that demonstrates release from PI.
Procedure Instead of presenting 3 letters on a trial, you present 3 words, all from the same conceptual category, like names of fruits. You test recall 15 seconds after presentation. This is done for 3 trials, each time with different words from the original category (fruits). On the 4th trial, the procedure is the same for the Control Group but the Experimental Group gets words from a new category.
Release from PI Recall in the Control Group decreases across all 4 trials, showing proactive interference from the similar words on preceding trials. Recall in the Experimental Group decreases across Trials 1 - 3 but then increases in Trial 4. The shift to a different category eliminates proactive interference from the previous words.
In the experiment by Weldon & Roediger on "transfer-appropriate processing", subjects were more likely to recognize a fragmented picture of an airplane if they previously saw that item as a _____ (picture, word).
They were more likely to recognize the word, airplane, that had letters missing if they previously saw that item as a _____ (picture, word).
Picture fragments were more likely to be recognized if the previously studied item was a picture.
Word fragments were more likely to be recognized if the previously studied item was a word.
What is "transfer-appropriate processing?
Transfer-appropriate processing means using the same cognitive operations during retrieval that were used during learning (encoding). The chances of retrieving information are best if there is a match between the operations used during retrieval and encoding.
Transfer-appropriate processing is a special case of the "encoding specificity principle". Define this principle and explain how it relates to transfer-appropriate processing.
The encoding specificity principle says that the chances of retrieving information are best if the situation in which retrieval is attempted closely resembles the situation in which learning (encoding) took place. Mental operations are an important part of these two situations. Keeping these operations the same facilitates retrieval.
"Procedural learning" puts information into long-term memory that enables us to carry out skilled actions and habits. It's classified as "nondeclarative memory" rather than "declarative memory." Explain why and give an example of a procedural memory.
Declarative memory is information we can describe. Nondeclarative memory is information we can't describe. We usually can't describe how and when muscles throughout our body should contract to perform a particular action, like tying our shoelaces, but the fact that we can perform this action shows that we have the necessary information in memory.
Collins & Quillian's hierarchical model of semantic memory says that we store facts in conceptual categories and these categories fit together logically, with broad categories containing narrower categories, for example, ANIMAL contains BIRDS, which contains CANARY...
In which category or categories would you find the fact that birds breathe, and what basic assumption of the model does this illustrate?
The fact that birds breathe is stored only in the ANIMAL category. This assumption is called the principle of "cognitive economy". To save space in memory, a given fact is stored in the broadest (highest) category to which the fact applies. By implication, it applies to categories contained within the broadest one, such as birds.
In a "speeded verification task", it takes a subject longer to say "True" when given the statement "An ant is an animal" than when given the statement "A dog is animal". How would this difference in reaction times be explained in terms of Collins & Loftus' Spreading Activation Model of semantic memory? Why can't it be explained by Collins & Quillian's Hierarchical model?
The Spreading Activation Model would say that the line of association connecting DOG to ANIMAL is shorter than the line connecting ANT to ANIMAL. This would be an example of the Typicality Effect: All instances of a concept are not equally good examples of it...
The Hierarchical Model says that relationships between categories are always logical. Logically, dogs and ants (like birds) are animals. Therefore, the DOG category and the ANT category are the same distance from the ANIMAL category. It should take subjects the same amount of time to get from ANT to ANIMAL as to get from DOG to animal.
Define "priming" and give an example.
In priming, you are more likely to recall information if you were given related information (called the "prime") a short time before. For example, suppose you were unable to recall the word "bird" from a list. You then recall it when given the prime "animal". The Spreading Activation Model readily explains this: Activation spread along a line of association connecting ANIMAL and BIRD.
(a)In Collins & Quillian's model, what would be the hierarchical order among the categories, MAMMAL, DOG, and ANIMAL?
(b) According to the model, how should reaction times compare for the sentences, "A mammal is an animal" and "A dog is an animal"?
(c) What is likely to be found, and what effect would this finding illustrate?
As the most inclusive category, ANIMAL would be at the top of the hierarchy, then would come MAMMAL, and then DOG.
The model predicts that "MAMMAL is ANIMAL" will be verified faster than "DOG is ANIMAL" because MAMMAL is closer to ANIMAL. However, DOG is a more familar word so the DOG sentence would be verified faster. This finding illustrates the familiarity effect.
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